| | Long drawn out unhappy
I just joined this group as a way to hear of the trials of others, to explain my own and get some help. My wife and I have been married for 9 years this October. When we got married, we never really had any orientation/counseling on marriage. Myself, I can't say I had any idea of what marriage was like and what I wanted/needed or what level this comitment was. I guess I really understood the vows and such, but that was about it. I know that I really did not know what my wife wanted. Not only that, but she was not an outgoing person and spent most of her life at home. Her home and family was her friends. I was an only child and only had a few friends as we lived out in the sticks. I think our issues really started here.
When we got married, I approached married life like I did as an only child - like I wanted things. Well, that met a roadblock, as that is not how my wife wanted things. Plus, she had separation anxiety from her family and that was a major brick wall to overcome. As I tried what I knew, it never worked. I fell deeper and deeper into withdrawl, eventually pretty much abandoning her emotionally, as when I tried to reach out and she did not respond, I gave up on trying. Well, fast forward 9 years, two children, and a couple of brief counseling sessions with our pastor. Things were not any better. From pretty much the 5 year point on, we lived separate lives. This spring, I started a spiritual/emotional adventure where I was able to understand all my issues and learn some of what I needed to be doing. I am ready to re-commit to this now, however over the last month she has found someone else, seen him probably a dozen times through volunteering and visits, spent quite a bit of time on the phone (I had to tripple my cell allowance!) and she admitted that she wants a divorce and wants to pursue this as a new relationship. I came on board a couple months too late. How crappy is that!
Right now I am at a loss on what to do. I realize that I have strong feelings for her and still love her and think we can work things out, as we never really did this 9 years ago. I think that if we were able to get past the frustration and anger, we would have more in common that we realize. My hope is that our pastors will get us together and help us get past the anger and get to a point where we can re-learn about each other, get some help with communication and conflict resolution and maybe get through this. At least this is my hope.
For some reason I equated loving my wife with being a good husband and being able to deliver what she needed. Well, I really did not know what she needed, so I was stuck with this conflict of I love her but I can't really love her, can I? Does this make any sense? Through my reading, I somehow just realized that I did love her, I was just immature and ignorant on how to love her. I would really like to restart this, however she seems bent on going to divorce. Whenever I bring up items on divorce, or when I called church to find out if they knew any lawyers, she gets upset and accuses me of being the instigator of this. I think she is just really confused and upset about going through all this. She hasn't worked in years, will not have any insurance, not sure where she will live or how to handle the kids all day, as I am also starting a new job where I will be out of town about 50% of they year. Everything was fine and dandy when the fantasy life of having someone else that likes you pay attention to you. Now the realities of being separated, caring for our kids, and possibly his kids, dealing with his ex wife, shuffling our kids to me and back, income cut in less than half, and obvious bills to be paid. Its a hard slap in the face to take.
I look forward to hearing others thoughts on this and any possible input on how I should handle trying to get back together. As I said, we do have nine years together, as tough as it was at times. We do have two daughters. I still do love her and if she came to me and said, "I was wrong on this. I have dropped him. I want to try to fix our relationship." I would wipe the slate clean for her and start over with a new, fresh outlook and move forward.